Raised IgA rheumatoid factor (RF) but not IgM RF or IgG RF is associated with extra-articular manifestations in rheumatoid arthritis

Scand J Rheumatol. 1995;24(6):372-5. doi: 10.3109/03009749509095183.


In rheumatoid arthritis (RA) seropositivity has been associated with poor prognosis including bone erosions and extra-articular manifestations. However, findings have been conflicting on the association between individual rheumatoid factor (RF) isotypes and extra-articular manifestations. In this study the occurrence of extra-articular manifestations was examined in the context of the RF isotype patterns rather than individual RF isotypes. IgM, IgG and IgA RF was measured by ELISA in 74 patients with RA and the findings correlated with the presence or absence of extra-articular manifestations. Of the IgA RF positive patients 80% had one or more extra-articular manifestations. In contrast, only 21% of patients with raised IgM and/or IgG RF but normal IgA RF had some extra-articular manifestations and 27% of the seronegative patients. It is concluded that the previously reported association between raised RF and extra-articular manifestations in RA can largely be attributed to the IgA RF isotype.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / blood
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / complications
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / immunology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin A / blood*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Rheumatoid Factor / blood*
  • Rheumatoid Nodule / blood
  • Rheumatoid Nodule / etiology
  • Rheumatoid Nodule / immunology*
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / blood
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / etiology
  • Sjogren's Syndrome / immunology*


  • Immunoglobulin A
  • Rheumatoid Factor